School Age Childcare may be based in a school, community centre or private premises and provides age appropriate care and activities for school age children outside of school hours. Children catered for include those in the 5 –14 year age bracket. This type of service can offer one or a combination of the following: Breakfast Club, After-school Club and school holiday periods.

Funding Schemes

If your child is using a service you may be eligible for financial supports please see link below for further information.

http://affordablechildcare.ie/

Each service is obliged to supply a fees list which would show you what you will pay for your childcare. You should also receive a service calendar which will state the days that the service will be closed

Capital 2018 Announcement

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs is delighted to announce that there will be an Early Years and a School Age Childcare Capital Programme in 2018.  The purpose of this announcement is to alert childcare services about the upcoming programme and give time to prepare to apply for the grants.

Strands

This year’s programme call will consist of 5 Strands.

–          Strand 1:  Expansion of an existing facility or creation of a new facility (Early Years)

–          Strand 2:  Essential building maintenance (Early Years, community services only)

–          Strand 3:  Creation of new natural outdoor play area (Early Years)

–          Strand 4: The expansion of an existing facility or creation of a new facility (School Age Childcare)

–          Strand 5:  Essential building maintenance & quality improvement (School Age Childcare, community services only)

Services can apply for all strands for which they are eligible.

Timelines

Please note that in 2018, Early Years and School Age Childcare Capital schemes will run concurrently.

The timeline for the Early Years and School Age Capital 2018 programmes is as follows:

Actions Key Dates
Application Guidelines 31st January 2018
Go live date for applications 12th February 2018
Closing date for applications 9th March 2018
Appraisals March-April 2018
Decisions May 2018
Notification of Outcomes Issued by end of May 2018

PLEASE NOTE APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED FOR 2018 CAPITAL GRANTS


CHILD PROTECTION

Children First, National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 2017, applies to all those working in a voluntary or paid capacity with children and families. It outlines the roles and responsibilities in relation to recognising, responding and reporting child protection and welfare concerns. You should always inform Tusla when you have reasonable grounds for concern that a child may have been, is being, or is at risk of being abused or neglected. If you ignore what may be symptoms of abuse, it could result in ongoing harm to the child. It is not necessary for you to prove that abuse has occurred to report a concern to Tusla. All that is required is that you have reasonable grounds for concern. It is Tusla’s role to assess concerns that are reported to it. If you report a concern, you can be assured that your information will be carefully considered with any other information available and a child protection assessment will be carried out where sufficient risk is identified.

Ireland’s National Child Protection and Welfare Guidance Training

It is recommended that everyone involved in early years services including staff, board members and volunteers complete the Tusla Children First e-learning programme
https://childrenfirstuniversal.hseland.ie/

Early Years Child Protection Programme

Early Years Child Protection Programme have produced a leaflet ‘The five steps to prepare for the Children First Act, 2015’.
http://carlowccc.ie/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/5-Steps-to-Prepare-for-Mandatory-Reporting.pdf

Children First Act 2015

The Children First Act 2015 was enacted on 19th November 2015 and commenced in full on December 11th 2017.
The Act places a number of statutory obligations on specific groups of professionals and on particular organisations providing services to children.
Through the provisions of the Act, it is intended to:
• Raise awareness of child abuse and neglect
• Provide for mandatory reporting by key professionals
• Improve child safeguarding arrangements in organisations providing services to children
• Provide for cooperation and information-sharing between agencies when Tusla – Child and Family Agency, is undertaking child protection
The legislation also contains a provision that removes the defence of reasonable chastisement in relation to corporal punishment as part of court proceedings.
The policy intent is that the legislation will operate side-by-side with the existing non-statutory obligations provided for in Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children (2017), see link below.

ChildrenFirst2017 (1)

The Criminal Justice (Withholding of Information on Offences against Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act, 2012 and the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act, 2012 are additional key pieces of complementary legislation designed to improve child safety and protection.

The National Vetting Bureau Act 2012-2016 makes it mandatory for persons working with children or vulnerable adults to be vetted. All early years services are required to comply with the provisions of the Act.

Carlow County Childcare Committee has responsibility for the delivery of Tusla’s Always Children First Child Protection training in the Early Years sector in Carlow. This is the standard certified Child Protection training module for the Early Years sector and it is the training which the Tusla Early Years Inspectors will require when training becomes part of the inspection process. Áine Gahan, Siobhán Cummins and Michelle Durkin are accredited to deliver this training.

Carlow County Childcare Committee delivers a full (6 hour) training programme. Refresher Training (3.5 hours) is available to participants who have completed the full training post-2014.

For more information on any of our upcoming Child Protection Training, please see the Training section of our Website or call us on 059-9140244.


PIP

What is PIP?

The Programmes Implementation Platform (PIP) is an online system which aims to streamline the administrative processes across the three national childcare funding programmes (ECCE, TEC and CCS).

Services can log-on, complete and view all their service details in one accessible place. PIP allows services to:
• Register children for each applicable funding programme
• Check whether places have been approved
• Appeal decisions
• Register transfers
• Submit Tax Clearance Certs (TCCs)
• View payment status

Supports Available to Services
Regular updates are available from Pobal on the PIP Homepage

You can also view the video guides on the PIP How To Guides Page.

Contact your local CCC or the PIP Online Support Team (Monday to Friday) at onlinesupport@pobal.ie or phone 01 – 5117222.  Please have your DCYA Reference number/s ready.